Isaiah Thomas returns to the Celtics’ starting lineup to help guide them to a 96-88 win over the Charolette Hornets at TD garden.
The Boston Celtics looked like they were on their way to their fourth straight loss after the Hornets entered the half with a 9-point lead with a score of 50-41. Both teams shot poorly in the first quarter as the Hornets were 6 of 24 (25 percent) from the floor in the first quarter, but three of their six buckets were three pointers. The Celtics ended the first quarter shooting 44.4 percent but were only 1 of 7 from beyond the 3-point line. In the second quarter the Hornets increased their shooting percentage to 38%, but the Celtics struggles only got worse as they ended the half 15 of 40 (37.5 percent) and a horrible 2 of 14 from beyond the 3-point line. The second half was a different story however, as the Celtics went on a 16-2 run in the third quarter and took a 64-62 lead. Heading into the fourth, the game was notched at 69-69 but the Celtics were able to pull away late with a 15-0 run with 3 minutes remaining to win the game 96-88.
The absence of Kemba Walker visibly affected the Hornets, but Nicolas Batum stepped up and ended the game with a double-double, posting 22 points and 10 rebounds. Batum’s efforts weren’t enough to match Isaiah Thomas’ game high 26 points as he sparked the Celtics’ comeback with 19 of his points coming in the fourth quarter. Al Horford posted some great numbers as well ending the game with 18 points along with 8 rebounds and 5 key blocks, a few of which were critical to the Celtics’ comeback win. Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder each ended the game with 12 points and were critical to the comeback as well.
The Boston Celtics made up for their poor shooting in the first half to come away with a key win, improving their record to 14-12 and dropping Charolette’s record to 14-13.